Today was the third attempt at stepping the pattern up to a gallop with Red, which went better than the last two times, although not perfect.
I'm sure there's things I am doing wrong to help him along. I haven't trained a barrel horse completely from start for finish for 10 years (and that was Beau), so you always forget about little things. Plus remembering what it's like to go from a finished horse to starting from scratch on a new horse who runs completely different is an experience too.
The only thing I had to set my camera on was a square baler parked in the corner. So the video is kind of far away, and the wind was blowing like crazy, but I guess it works.
This first video is just a trot through. He got scared of something after the 1st barrel, hence the little stutter step.
This video is another trot through.
Then we tried a gallop. Ufda. Lost our impulsion around the first barrel. Second barrel was so-so but I was happy we made it all the way around without breaking stride. Third barrel didn't make it all the way around but I think I should have given him a bigger pocket going into it, so *I* think I am to blame for that.
Certainly not our best on the second try through. I think I need to be more "pushy" with him in the turn to keep him moving? We lost our impulsion around each barrel.
Then I thought, hmmm, let's try one thing at a time and take the lead change out of it for right now. So I trotted him to the first barrel, and then picked it up for the second. We almost made it fully around the barrel at a gallop. I think I just need to drive him forward through it more. And then I screw it up again by not giving him a big enough pocket on the third barrel.
Two big thigs **I** need to get my rider butt into gear
1) Don't let him turn too soon on the second, as he'll anticipate it
2) Give him a big enough pocket on the third
And the last galloping video.... Wahoo! We made it all the way around the first barrel. Could have been a tighter pocket, but hey, we haven't made it all the way around yet. Then I should have slowed him down to change leads (He's getting close to learning his flying lead changes but he doesn't have it down yet), but well I guess he's gotta figure it out right? It looks like he switched at the last second, but couldn't quite make it all the way around. And since our third barrel was kind crummy the last few times (mostly my fault) I decided to stop and reinforce a good third turn.
For curiousity, here's where we were back in July.... not real great.